Jagannath

Karin Tidbeck. Cheeky Frawg (www.cheekyfrawg.com), $11.99 trade paper (160p) ISBN 978-0-9857904-0-0
A man in a troubled romantic relationship with an airship and the horror of being suicidally depressed in the presence of a merciful and loving God are just two of the intensely memorable stories in the English-language debut of Swedish fantasist Tidbeck (Vem är Arvid Pekon?). The title story explores a society of symbiotes living inside a vast, nurturing “mother.” An ordinary family with a history of mental illness struggles with the influence of the Vittra, strange elflike beings who may be their ancestors, in “Reindeer Mountain.” A woman creates a vegetable child only to lose him to the lure of the earth in “Cloudberry Jam.” Not all of Tidbeck’s stories have that same quiet, elusive magic—“Herr Cederberg,” for example, gradually loses its way—but all are impressively brave literary experiments. By turns brilliant and indecipherably cryptic, this book will capture the imaginations of fans of experimental fantasy and science fiction and is a fine launch for Cheeky Frawg, a new press dedicated to international and translated fiction. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 09/24/2012
Genre: Fiction
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